In a recent interview with the LA Times promoting their six-night residency at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas, they discussed how the Bush incident back in March of 2003 changed their highly successful career they were having at the time and place in country music.
Now in case you don’t know or remember much about the controversy, they received major backlash when lead singer Natalie Maines said at a show in London back in 2003 that they were ashamed to be from the same state as former President George Bush (sitting President at the time), and they didn’t support the war and imminent invasion of Iraq. As a Texan myself…I was also pretty ashamed of Natalie Maines.
Her comment obviously triggered some major backlash. It actually got them blacklisted by a lot of country radio stations, damaging their sales and even caused people to stop buying concert tickets. I remember radio stations holding events where they would invite listeners to bring their CDs and tapes to be crushed by steamrollers. Maines did issue an apology though several days later, but the damage had already been done.
Country fans didn’t care about her apology and wanted the band to just go away. Basically…it wasn’t great for their reputation at all. Fast forward to two decades later, they don’t regret it at all.
Natalie Maines still runs her mouth like a marathon shit talker. She said it’s still a defining aspect of their career “in the way it set us free.” She added that it got them out of being in a “box” with country music, adding that they “never wanted to be in” it in the first place…
“It’s defining in the way it set us free.
It got us out of this box of country music, which we never wanted to be in and never felt like that’s who we were.
We didn’t have to do any of that bulls— anymore. It wasn’t like, ‘Oh, country music, please take us back.’ It was middle fingers: ‘Bye!’”
I mean sure…
The Chicks, formerly known as The Dixie Chicks, have released eight albums within the country genre, and have won 13 Grammy awards for their work, including the Grammy for Album of the Year in 2007 for Taking the Long Way. With a name like The Dixie Chicks…what genre were they really going for?
Of course they still remain pretty controversial to this day, and are still very outspoken in terms of their politics. They released their first album in almost 15 years in 2020, Gaslighter.
If you care to see them in concert. They do have a world tour starting in early June.